I recently discovered we get all these corporate cards at work, and we’ve been working our way through all the places. This time we went to New Lanark, an 18th century textile mill town/village in the Clyde Valley and a World Heritage Site. It was managed by the ‘utopian socialist’ Robert Owen, and became an example of social reform, with things like good quality housing, free medical care and education for adults and children being provided for the mill workers. It sits in the bottom of the valley near some waterfalls (the mill was water-powered), and it all looks lovely just now with the autumn leaves. The exhibition focuses mainly on the history, and there’s also a great playpark (though it was too wet to stay there long) and a baby/toddler sensory room. My favourite bit was the historic classroom.
Though one of the main reasons I’d been keen to go was because they sell wool there! Lovely organic wool that is spun in the actual mills, in all weights, with some undyed options too. And good value – plus it happened to be wool week so I got an extra 10% off. I really feel they’re missing a trick, not marketing the museum more to the yarny community to be honest. The exhibition itself doesn’t talk much about the cotton/wool as a product, it’s more about the machines as machines that could have been making anything. I reckon much more could be done on that front with special exhibitions, and more of an integration of the wool shopping into the tourist elements. It’s not the most accessible site (it’s about an hours drive from Edinburgh, and 45 minutes from Glasgow, and you need a car to get there), but if the Edinburgh Yarn Festival and Shetland Wool Week are anything to go by, yarnies are willing to traverse continents to get to remote wooly places. Anyway, what do I know!
I got some lovely blue stuff, which I unfortunately failed to get a daylight picture of going to be a harvest cardigan for Milo, as a way of dipping my toes back into garment knitting (I’ve got a jumper I completed about 80% before I was pregnant with Milo, and I’m trying to build up the motivation to finish it). On the way home Milo was going ‘are you making one for me, and one for you, and one for papa?’ Slow down baby, let’s see how this one goes first!